Just got an e-mail from the Goethe Institut in Chicago announcing that Ross Benjamin has been awarded this year’s Wolff Translation Prize. Here’s the official press release:
The jury for the Helen and Kurt Wolff Translation Prize is please to award the prize for 2009 to Ross Benjamin for his translation of Michael Maar’s Speak, Nabokov, published by Verso. The jury finds that this remarkably musical translation reads beautifully, and brings to English-speaking readers an important study of a writer of world stature whose works cry out for skilled exegesis. Benjamin’s translation is elegant, witty, even playful, doing justice to both the German original and the book’s subject. The translator reveals a sophisticated understanding of literary criticism and his own sure sense of literary style.
Congrats, Ross! And Speak, Nabokov sounds fascinating:
On the eve of the controversial, posthumous publication of The Original of Laura, Michael Maar follows his critically acclaimed The Two Lolitas with a revealing new perspective on Vladimir Nabokov’s life and work. Hunting down long-hidden clues in the novels, and using the themes that run through Nabokov’s fiction to illuminate the life that produced them, Maar constructs a compelling psychological and philosophical portrait. Characteristically graceful and engaging, Speak, Nabokov offers a vital new perspective on the twentieth-century master.
Ross will be officially honored at the annual Wolff Symposium in Chicago, which will take place on June 21st and 22nd.
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